Toyota Company’s Seven Ps of Marketing

7Ps is a major concept that is applied in the locomotive industry to realize the large volume of sales, employee retention, and annual turnover. This paper entails an analysis of the 7Ps applied by Toyota Company, which is among the top manufacturers of vehicles in the world. The paper focuses on how numerous marketing variables have enabled the company to gain huge profits. Moreover, it will demonstrate how each of the variables gives the company a competitive advantage amidst its competitors. Moreover, the discussion will illustrate how the 7Ps helps to boost the corporate image and how they enable Toyota Company to obtain a remarkable market share.

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Over the years, the traditional marketing mix has been extended and redefined owing to the complex nature of products and services.1 In Toyota Company, competition in the global market and demand to stay ahead in the market has seen it evolve its concept of marketing to provide intangible and heterogeneous services. It has sought to implore the best considerations that its management can articulate in the highly changing market arena not just to survive, but also to profitably operate and derive the necessary positive images in the market. It is from this consideration that it employs all the 7 principles of marketing as an aspect of progress.2

Marketing

Marketing is regarded as one of the most crucial activities in any industry. In modern marketing, the term marketing mix is a common concept. In various contexts, the marketing mix is usually referred to as the “7Ps of marketing”. This entails a set of controllable factors or tools that are blend together to meet the needs of consumers. In the case of Toyota Company, there are seven tools or variables that used to ensure that consumers of automotive products are satisfied. These variables include product, price, people, place, promotion, process, and physical evidence. This paper aims to discuss in depth the 7Ps in Toyota Company.

Product

There are numerous products which Toyota Company has managed to inject into the global market. For instance, we have numerous vehicles such as Corolla, Land Cruiser, RAV4, Lexus, and Avensis. Toyota is proud to have left a remarkable mark in the global motorway. The company has managed to produce automobiles that can cope with the impending fuel upsurges. As a result, Toyota has become a major competitor in the car industry. Embracing innovation has made the company to launch products that meet consumer’s expectations.3

One of the key elements of service marketing for Toyota is its products that satisfy customers’ needs. According to Cusumano, the success of Toyota products and services has been pegged on the notion that they are diverse and intangible. They fit consumers’ tasks, meet their needs and expectations. It is important to note that Toyota products, cars, and car accessories, are fast evolving in the market and therefore consumers continue enjoying new designs with time. The company has continued to enhance the quality of its products by factoring in consumers’ tastes and establishing effective links to address their demands.

Price

Toyota Company has set prices proportionally to the consumer’s income in various parts of the world. The company has managed to produce cars for low and high-income people thus ensuring that its target consumers are not let out. This has given the company a competitive advantage since the sales continue to increase and maximum profits are realized. However, the pricing is highly dependent on demand and supply. Toyota’s brand, the experience its products give to its customers and its ambiance are some of the factors that have determined its price offering.

While it is hard to measure service and tangible costs of production, Challagalla, Murtha, and Jaworski indicate that certain factors such as overheads and labor costs might determine the price of a product.4 The price determination for Toyota Company has been consumer-friendly. This has been so while maintaining the highest possible quality. Indeed, Toyota products represent good value for clients’ money.5 Its prices represent the tenets of marketing concept as they are not cheap but represent quality, a consideration that gets clients to pay a little more.6

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Place

Toyota Company has been able to identify numerous market segments where its goods are in high demand. As a result, its products have successfully penetrated most of the markets in Asia, Africa, America, and Europe.

Promotion

Toyota Company has launched advanced promotional activities. Through advertisements, the company has shown its commitment to manufacturing environmentally-friendly vehicles. Promotion tactics used have revealed the green image of Toyota locomotives that eventually increase their marketability.

Oldani defines promotion as to how clients are informed of products and services to the point where the services are sold.7 Drawing from Toyota promotion practice, it involves making small changes in the advertising of the product. Such changes cause a dramatic shift in results and enhance sales. To counter the challenges of promotion, Toyota has continually developed new strategies, offerings, advertising approaches, and new sales and marketing processes. It has used local medial such as the television, the newsprint, and even the radio to carry out promotions.

People

The company is keen to empower its entire workforce in the service and production line. This has made its workers creative and customer friendly. As a result, it has boosted the company’s self-image and its ability to respond to consumers’ expectations.8 In a company, the managing director and the front line staff are some of the individuals who are relied upon to promote the image, products, and services the company offers.

According to Rajasekera, it is essential to have the right people to drive a business forward. Management in Toyota has established the necessary supportive structures that have witnessed the growth of its products and offerings. Its leadership role in the provision of the necessary management practices that lead to the best management practices in organizations. It is in this regard that the company assimilated its widely known Toyota Company Philosophy that calls for long term critical thinking as a basis for management decision making at all times. Therefore, its management structure has been greatly devolved to the lower levels where it has a direct link with employees to monitor how they deal with clients.9

Process

Toyota has embraced a lean production model hence it can produce just-in-time products. Proper management has reduced wastage and production cost thus increasing efficiency. This has enabled the company to capture a huge market share.

Physical evidence

In most companies, the interaction between consumers and manufacturers ends when a business deal is made. However, Toyota has maintained a tangible presence and a stable dealership with its new and old clients. This has ensured that consumers still get services from the manufacturer when a need arises. Customers have gained confidence with the company and this has enhanced more sales.

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Place as a marketing mix refers to an actual location where a company’s product is being sold. Toyota has vastly grown and this has seen it continue to reflect and review locations upon which its salespersons meet its clients. It sells its services and products in different places. This according to Causamo has the advantage of increasing sales. Toyota also uses online shops, telemarketing, and mail order as well as catalogs to facilitate a greater understanding of the products by the consumers.

Positioning in marketing is a unique component which according to Rajasekera involves understanding how clients think or regard a product. Based on attribution theory, this also extends to how people regard a company, its position in the market, and its offerings. By the onset of the 21st century, the company had assimilated highly modernistic models of making its automobiles which saw its recent hybrid cars colonize the US market with ease. Today, it has over 15% of the US market share where over 2.5 million cars are sold annually. Globally, its employees are over 350, 000 in number while over 100 million others are indirectly affiliated to it in major garages and repair operations worldwide. These factors put in a competitive marketplace make Toyota a successful company.10

The packaging is an important marketing mix. It represents the body of a product. Fontenot et al. indicate that many customers are normally attracted, impresses, or repelled by the first impression of a product. Accordingly, Toyota has used the unique and attractive packaging of its vehicles. This has also extended to its brochures, correspondence, waiting rooms, shops, and offices as well as salespersons who look professional in every way.

Conclusion

To recap it all, Toyota’s marketing mix always ensures that the company offers satisfactory and quality products to consumers. Proper use of its marketing variables has enabled the company to increase its profitability and dominance in the locomotive industry.

Bibliography

Challagalla, G., M., Brian, & J., Bernard, ‘Marketing doctrine: a principles- based approach to guiding marketing decision making in firms’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 78, no. 4, 2014, pp. 4-20.

Cusumano, M. A., ‘Technology Strategy and Management Reflections on the Toyota Debacle’, Communications of the ACM, vol. 54, no. 1, 2011, pp. 33-35.

Fontenot, J. et al., ‘Expert-to-matrix: improved learning and improved outcomes in principles of marketing’, Journal for Advancement of Marketing Education vol. 20, no. 1, 2012, pp. 11-18.

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Heizer, J.H. & T. Barry, Principles of Operations Management: Sustainability and Supply Chain Management, 2nd edn, Prentice Hall, New York, 2014.

Liker, J.K., Toyota and Kiichiro Toyoda, Handbook of East Asian Entrepreneurship, 4th edn, New House Publishers, New Delhi, 2014.

Monden, Y., Toyota production system: an integrated approach to just-in-time, 3rd edn, CRC Press, London, 2011.

Oldani, H., ‘Six key principles for identifying and ensuring success in marketing channels’, Journal of Brand Strategy, vol. 4, no. 2, 2015, pp. 127-133.

Rajasekera, J., ‘Challenges to Toyota caused by recall problems, social networks and digitization’, Asian Academy of Management Journal, vol. 18, no. 1, 2013, pp. 1- 17.

Takeuchi, H., ‘The contradictions that drive Toyota’s success’, Strategic Direction, vol.23, no.25, 2008, pp 27-38.

Ward, A., ‘The second Toyota paradox: How delaying decisions can make better cars faster’, Sloan management review, vol. 34, no. 6, 2012, pp.26-29.

Footnotes

  1. Y. Monden, Toyota production system: an integrated approach to just-in-time, 3rd edn, CRC Press, London, 2011, p. 76.
  2. M.A. Cusumano, ‘Technology Strategy and Management Reflections on the Toyota Debacle’, Communications of the ACM, vol. 54, no. 1, 2011, p. 35.
  3. H. Takeuchi, ‘The contradictions that drive Toyota’s success’, Strategic Direction, vol.23, no.25, 2008, p. 29.
  4. G. Challagalla, Brian,M. & Bernard, J., ‘Marketing doctrine: a principles-basedd approach to guiding marketing decision making in firms’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 78, no. 4, 2014, p.8.
  5. J.H. Heizer, & T. Barry, Principles of Operations Management: Sustainability and Supply Chain Management, 2nd edn, Prentice Hall, New York, 2014.p. 89.
  6. J.K. Liker, Toyota and Kiichiro Toyoda, Handbook of East Asian Entrepreneurship, 4th edn, New House Publishers, New Delhi, 2014, p. 29.
  7. H. Oldani, “Six key principles for identifying and ensuring success in marketing channels.” Journal of Brand Strategy, vol. 4, no. 2, 2015, p. 127.
  8. J. Fontenot, J. et al.,‘Expert-to-matrix: improved learning and improved outcomes in principles of marketing’, Journal for Advancement of Marketing Education, vol. 20, no. 1, 2012, p.13.
  9. J. Rajasekera, ‘Challenges to Toyota caused by recall problems, social networks, and digitization’, Asian Academy of Management Journal, vol. 18, no. 1, 2013, p. 8.
  10. A. Ward, ‘The second Toyota paradox: How delaying decisions can make better cars faster’, Sloan management review, vol. 34, no. 6, 2012, p.27.
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